The efficacy of Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS) for an expanding array of neurological and psychiatric disorders demonstrates directly that DBS affects the basic electroneurophysiological mechanisms of the brain. The increasing array of active electrode configurations, stimulation currents, pulse widths, frequencies, and pulse patterns provides valuable tools to probe electroneurophysiological mechanisms. The extension of basic electroneurophysiological and anatomical concepts using sophisticated computational modeling and simulation has provided relatively straightforward explanations of all the DBS parameters except frequency. This article summarizes current thought about frequency and relevant observations. Current methodological and conceptual errors are critically examined in the hope that future work will not replicate these errors. One possible alternative theory is presented to provide a contrast to many current theories. DBS, conceptually, is a noisy discrete oscillator interacting with the basal ganglia–thalamic–cortical system of multiple re-entrant, discrete oscillators. Implications for positive and negative resonance, stochastic resonance and coherence, noisy synchronization, and holographic memory (related to movement generation) are presented. The time course of DBS neuronal responses demonstrates evolution of the DBS response consistent with the dynamics of re-entrant mechanisms. Finally, computational modeling demonstrates identical dynamics as seen by neuronal activities recorded from human and nonhuman primates, illustrating the differences of discrete from continuous harmonic oscillators and the power of conceptualizing the nervous system as composed on interacting discrete nonlinear oscillators.
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License
which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited